I did not realize the implications of a goat fiber workshop.

If I did, my last entry would have included far more exclamation points. Sure, if you asked me where cashmere came from, I would have said goats. But I never made the leap. goat fiber workshop = learning about and spinning cashmere!!!!!!!!!

I would like to say from the start that by far, this was the most organized workshop I have ever attended. Robin Russo is a fantastic teacher and if you ever have the opportunity to take one of her classes, do. Just look at the notebooks she handed to each of us at the beginning of the class. She covered everything in depth, answered all questions, gave us all equal amounts of time and was thoroughly prepared. We learned about the micrometer scale of fibers (human hair = 60 cashmere < 18), how it all came about, how the opening of trade with China has affected the cashmere market, preparation of/spinning of. We also covered mohair and angora, although I had to miss most of that section since I had to leave the workshop a bit early to drive D#2 around town. Usually the workshops are mostly winding down in the last 45 minutes and I didn’t think leaving would be a problem, so I told D#2 it would be no problem to drive her places. argh!

anyway, the workshop was fabulous and I learned that my two favorite things to spin were the 15 micron carded cashmere and carded cashgora. To quote the workbook, “Cashgora is a fiber with a micron count higher than 19 – it is produced by crossing a down bearing goat with a mohair goat”

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4_april_13_goat_fiber_workshop_1 4_april_13_goat_fiber_workshop_2

Did I mention that I fell in love with Robin’s wheel? That her husband makes them by hand? That they are very, very reasonably priced? That they will be in Maryland?

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9 thoughts on “

  1. Does this mean it’s decided — you’re going to Maryland, then?

    I’ve read about the terrible consequences to both animals and the environment because of the “cheap” cashmere from China.

  2. I am learning so much from you! goat fibers(: I will look out of the wheels in Maryland in case I do start to spin.! My knitting friends and I are making a trip there .
    Lots of flooding, snow , sleet and crap here today.Perfect day to knit with pugs by fire.

  3. Interesting, as an angora goat and a cashmere goat owner, I have been researching the cashgora a bit. Most reliable sources seem to think it’s worthless fiber. Of course, it’s not worthless if people want it. I’ve been looking a bit into pygora, as well. We’re trying to determine if the fiber is worth the pasture space. I love reading entries like this because we are the heartbeat of the fiber world.

    I took a goat fibers spinning workshop with Carol Rhoades in Oct and though I didn’t love spinning the cashmere, I love that I learned about it. I really liked the mohair, and overall was very pleased to be a goat owner that day! :D

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